Wife Battery: A Divine Command from the Garden of Eden or a Gene Disorder in Men? Ethical Perspectives

George Anderson Jnr, Joseph Oppong


In the past, women in the Ghanaian traditional societies were mostly not actively involved in issues relating to decision-making, leadership, and public engagement in the company of men. Their place was the kitchen. That is, their responsibilities were to prepare meals, nurture the children, and tidy up the home. Besides, they were regarded as a man’s bought property. In this sense, women could be subjected to any form of inhumane treatments. One of such inhumane treatments that have caught the attention of scholars, human rights activists and some NGOs is wife battery. From an ethical perspective, we raise the question, what are the ethical bases for the reasons why men subject their wives to battery? Could it be a divine command from the Garden of Eden, a gene disorder in men or what? Using the descriptive research design of the qualitative methodology, this paper from an ethical perspective examines the act of wife battery and its effects on the family and the victim (woman). The paper argues, wife battery is neither a dictate from the Garden of Eden nor a gene disorder in men, however it is rather an erroneous socialisation of men towards how they should treat women. Further to note, wife battery in its essence is an unethical behaviour. This is because the act is unjust, maleficent, reduces the worth and dignity of women, dehumanises, and alters the physical and psychological framework of women.

Keywords: Battery, wife battery, ethics, Ghana, divine command, gene, Garden of Eden, disorder, erroneous socialisation

DOI: 10.7176/JPCR/42-03

Publication date:March 31st 2019

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